Smooth SF father-son duo makes music to please 

The latest incarnation of Frankie Navarro’s band 2 Zmooth features his 14-year-old son Christian on trumpet.

“I like the way he plays, except when he goofs up,” jokes Frankie, a few days before a busy performance schedule — including gigs at the Cannery and Union Square — the duo kicks off this month.

But the resident of San Francisco’s Ingleside neighborhood is quite serious about having his offspring play with him.

They got their start in 2008 at the Excelsior Street Fair when multi-instrumentalist Frankie, dissatisfied with his former partner, a “forgetful” singer, asked Christian to sit in with him for a couple of songs.

With a trumpet instead of vocals playing the melody, Frankie knew the band would have a different sound.

But it worked. These days, 2 Zmooth, which recently appeared at San Francisco’s Carnaval, plays a varied repertoire of R&B, salsa, Latin blues, Latin jazz, “radio stuff, old stuff — as long as it’s appealing,” says Frankie, adding, “My whole idea is to please everybody.”

Christian, who will enter San Francisco’s School of the Arts in the fall, personally prefers Latin jazz, and plays with the Latin Jazz Youth Ensemble of San Francisco. His musical inspirations include Miles Davis and Tito Rodriguez.

Still, he enjoys performing with his dad. “It’s fun,” he says, admitting that he doesn’t get as nervous as he used to. While he’s looking forward to a musical career, he says, “I think I still have a lot to learn.”

In the meantime, his killer rendition of Robin Thicke’s “Lost Without You” can be heard on YouTube in a 2 Zmooth video.

As for the band’s name — “smooth” but with a “z” — Frankie says its distinctiveness has served him well, and it’s easy to search online. “You know how it is. We needed some kind of twist,” he says.


IF YOU GO
2 Zmooth

Where:
Cannery Courtyard, Beach and Leavenworth streets, San Francisco
When: 3 to 7 p.m. Friday and noon to 3 p.m. June 20
Tickets: Free
Contact: www.reverbnation.com/twozmooth
Note: The duo also performs at 12:30 p.m. June 16 in San Francisco’s Union Square in a free “Jewels in the Square” concert.

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Leslie Katz

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